Monday, October 6, 2008

Sri Lanka suicide bomb kills 23 including politician

COLOMBO (Reuters) -- A Sri Lankan suicide bomber killed 23 people at a historic tourist town on Monday, including a retired army general who was an opposition party provincial leader.

The blast, immediately blamed on the rebel Tamil Tigers, also injured at least 80 people, the military said.

The bomber struck during the opening of a new office for the opposition United National Party (UNP) in the north central town of Anuradhapura, 200 km (124 miles) north of the capital Colombo, attended by retired Major-General Janaka Perera.

"A suicide bomber went inside and exploded. My senior officer there said 22 people were killed, and among the dead were Janaka Perera and his wife," Deputy Inspector General K.P.P. Pathirana told Reuters. The toll was later raised to 23.

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